Munojot Yo‘lchiyeva

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Munojot Yo‘lchiyeva
Born (1960-11-26) November 26, 1960 (age 56)
Ferghâna valley
Genres shashmaqam
Occupation(s) Singer
Years active 1978-present

Munojot Yo‘lchiyeva (born 1960), also known under her name Munadjat Yulchieva, is the leading performer of classical Uzbek music and its Persian-language cousin Shashmaqâm. She is famous for the unique quality of her voice and her natural charisma.

Professional career[edit]

Munojot Yo`lchieva in Paris

Yo‘lchiyeva was born in 1960 in the Ferghâna valley near Tashkent, and from an early age it was obvious she had a great gift as a singer. This nearly resulted in her being channelled into a career as an opera singer, but she was inexorably drawn towards the slow, aching music of her own ancient culture, something that seemed almost pre-ordained by her name, which means 'ascent to God' or simply 'prayer'.

She is frequently accompanied by her mentor, the famous rubab player, Shawqat Mirzaev [1]. Her repertoire includes many of his compositions, and she usually performs with his ensemble. Typically the group use local instruments such as the dutar (two stringed lute), the tanbur (3-stinged lute), a gidjak spike fiddle, doira frame drum, ney flute and at times the chang zither. Those lucky enough to attend one of her rare concerts abroad will witness a sumptuously dressed performer of startling gravitas and charisma, with long pigtails trailing down to her waist.

In 1997, she won the International Music Festival Sharq Taronalari[ru]. In 2005, she performed at the Austrian Music Festival Glatt und Verkehrt.

Only two recordings of her music are widely available - the first for the French label Ocora (1994) and the most recent (1997) on Germany's Network label, which has the subtitle A Haunting Voice.

Further reading[edit]

KOCIEJOWSKI, Marius. The Pebble Chance: Feuilletons & Other Prose (Biblioasis, 2014) contains a chapter on her, "A Singer from Ferghana".

External links[edit]